One thing is to love grated cheese; another is for it to last, which is determined by how well you can preserve it. If you are a cheese lover, you will find that grated cheese is often used in recipes for many dishes, but having it last remains a challenge. So how long does grated cheese last?
Grated cheese can last up to 4 weeks if stored in the fridge and up to 6 months if stored in the freezer unopened. If it is open but not inside the fridge, it could last about four hours. However, grated cheese gets bad faster when kept near foods with a strong smell, like fish or garlic.
When making pasta or soups, grated cheese comes in handy because of how quickly it melts in recipes. In this article, you will learn about everything related to how to store grated cheese to make it last longer.
How Do You Keep Grated Cheese Fresh Longer?
Freeze it. You should keep your grated cheese in the freezer if you want it to stay fresh for a long time. Place it in an airtight, resealable plastic freezer bag, and freeze it for up to three months. Better still, just put the grated cheese in the bag directly into the freezer.
Grated cheese can also stay fresh longer if you keep it in a plastic bag or the package. Just ensure no air is in it, and it is sealed tight. However, if you will not freeze it, try to get cheese you would use quickly.
The texture of grated cheese can change when frozen, making the taste unpleasant after defrosting. You must go for firm cheeses like swiss or hard ones like parm if you want to freeze it and have it last.
Should Grated Cheese Be Refrigerated?
Yes. Grated cheese will become hard and dry without refrigeration, causing it to lose its flavor and can only last for about a week. The best cheeses to freeze when grated are your everyday blocks like cheddar, Monterey Jack, and part-skim mozzarella, favorites for mac and cheese.
If the cheese containers stay closed, then it’s possible that they can last for about two months in the fridge. But as soon as you open it, exposing it to air, time begins to count, and you can only have them last for four weeks. Furthermore, if you find that mold has begun growing on the cheese, it’s a sign that you should thrash it.
Parmigiano Reggiano, for example, which is also known as Parmesan, is a hard, dry cheese that you can grate into pieces. You may not need to refrigerate this cheese because of how dry it is, but doing so wouldn’t be harmful and could even help it last longer.
How Do You Store Grated Cheese In The Freezer?
If you are grating it yourself, wrap it tightly in a sealed plastic bag without allowing other aromas to penetrate the cheese in the freezer. Cheeses like blue cheese should be stored separately. You can get a vegetable crisper if you don’t have a separate compartment for cheese in your freezer.
Cheeses like that need enough oxygen and space, so it doesn’t spread their aroma to everything else in the fridge. Wrap the grated cheese in wax or parchment paper before putting it in a partially sealed plastic bag. To keep it even safer and lasting, you should replace the wrap whenever you open it.
However, the surface area increases when you grate cheese, making it dry out faster. So to avoid this, there is another simple trick to store grated cheese in the freezer. Add two tablespoons of cornstarch to the plastic bag, then shake so that it touches every part. It serves as an anti-clumping agent.
How Long Can I Keep Grated Cheese In The Fridge?
You can keep grated cheese in the fridge for 3-5 days after opening, provided you keep it in an airtight container. The quality may begin to deteriorate after that time. If you can’t consume it within that time frame, it’s best to freeze it. However, if it is not opened, it can last beyond its expiry date for 1-2 weeks.
To preserve grated cheese, it’s important to allow it to lose moisture. This can be done by storing it in a ventilated container or spreading it on an open tray. Dry cheese can last indefinitely, while moist cheese wrapped in plastic or stored in a jar will develop mold in about a week.
This principle applies to all hard cheeses, such as Asiago or Cheddar. Remove the cheese from its plastic wrapping and store it in the refrigerator on a paper towel to extend its shelf life. It will dry faster than when wrapped but can last for years. If the cheese becomes very dry, simply wait until it dries completely and grate it.
The shelf life of commercially grated cheese is typically longer if not opened and can last a couple of weeks past the expiration date. However, the exact shelf life can vary, and using the cheese before the printed date is recommended. The cheese may last a few extra days, but it’s best to freeze it if you need to keep it longer than five days.